In this most difficult year, I would like to say a huge thank you to everyone for supporting the work of ABF The Soldiers’ Charity. At times like this it is all too easy to become inward looking and focus solely on self, family and close friends.

However, the demands placed on the charity and the Army community – many of whom will be serving away from home over the Christmas period – have not gone away. You have shown that none of this has been forgotten and I would like to thank – and applaud – all those who have (again) sustained their support throughout this extraordinary year.

Read the full message here. 

 

The Gift of a Kiss: Adrian’s Story

Adrian always knew he was going to be a soldier. He served in the Royal Anglian Regiment for nine years, including two tours of Northern Ireland. Then, in 2005, he was diagnosed with Muscular Dystrophy – a progressive muscle weakening disease. We were delighted to award Adrian a grant towards the cost of a standing wheelchair, enabling him to stand and kiss his wife Lucy for the first time in six years. Read more here. 

Coaching Cormoran Strike: From Page to Screen

Barney Gillespie and Tom Burke (Ed Smith/Steffan Hill, Bronte Film & TV).

Cormoran Strike, the hero of Robert Galbraith’s bestselling Strike series, is a grizzled Afghanistan veteran who uses his background in the military police to solve crimes. We spoke to our ambassador, Barney Gillespie BEM, about his work as an advisor for the BBC TV adaption.

Like Strike, Barney sustained an operational injury in Afghanistan. In the article, he discusses the process of bringing Strike’s military background and physical disability to life onscreen. “For me, it’s about what you can do even though you’ve been injured – even though you’ve got a prosthetic leg. That’s what I took away from it.”

Find out more. 

Our charity helps Reading Force reach 6,000 Forces children

a shared reading initiative for Armed Forces families. We have been working in partnership since 2014 to encourage military families to read together – even when separated by deployment or training.

Since the beginning of the pandemic, Reading Force has sent free books and scrapbooks to 6,000 Armed Forces children – providing a constructive activity during lockdown and helping them to keep in touch with loved ones.

Read more.

Operation Bletchley: Christmas in Berlin

Our award-winning virtual event, Operation Bletchley, is back for a Christmas Special! It’s Christmas, 1948. In Berlin, the fragile peace between East and West has collapsed, resulting in a Soviet Blockade that has left two million Germans cut off from vital supplies.

Starting on Boxing Day, your mission is to walk 24 miles in 12 days, breaking a series of cryptic clues as you go. Can you deliver the final message and break the blockade before time runs out?  Register now. 

Join us for our virtual Army Carol Service

Enjoy the magic of our Army Carol Service from the comfort of your own home. This year, we have recorded a special film of the service from the Chapel of the Royal Hospital Chelsea, which is available to order on our website. Featuring readings by the Chief of the General Staff and Johnson Beharry VC, the service is the perfect way to support the Army family this Christmas. Order now. 

From everyone here at ABF The Soldiers’ Charity, we wish you a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.

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